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How do I pick an activity for my child?

Dear Obsessive Mother’s Guide to Parenting,

      My daughter is finally old enough to really participate in an activity.  Now the problems is which activity to pick?  Dance, choir, karate, gymnastics…. so many choices!  How do I narrow it down?  Can you send me some advice?

-Kimberly from Oak Ridge

Dear Kimberly,

           Great question.  Let’s go over some do’s and don’t about choosing an activity for your child:

1) DO look for a place that offers a TRIAL CLASS.  Don’t sign up if they don’t let your kid see what the classes are like before signing a contract.  Be very careful of their “last day to get a refund”.  If it’s before your child has even taken one class, you’re probably in for a rough ride.

2) DO ask for referrals.  The parents in your community know what places have the best coaches and which have bad reputations.  You can check out Facebook pages like The Woodlands Voice or Woodlands Moms Reviews for tips and you can ask for referrals there.

3) DO listen to your child.  She has ideas about what she might like to try.  Keep in mind, she also has no idea what a class will be like though, so don’t discount an idea before she’s tried it.  

4) DON’T put up with any location that is unkind to your child.  Speak up and share the experience so other children are not also hurt by the same insensitive person.  One thing this area has is competition.  There are plenty of other locations that offer the same classes with better coaches.

5) DO stick with it if your child’s objection is it’s too hard.  Some locations are better at others at bringing in newbies and catching them up to the rest of the class.  

6) DON’T overdo it with her schedule.  Maintain a healthy balance and don’t become one of those “moms” that gets her own Lifetime weekly episode.  

7) DO think ahead.  Musical instruments can lead to college scholarships.  Athletics that she learns now can help her with a lifetime of physical fitness.  Something like swimming she can do her whole life.  

8) and DO keep us posted on what you find and like in the area.  Moms know best.  Enjoy this time with your daughter and take lots of pictures.  This is a great opportunity for her to see how proud you are of her.  


The Obsessive Mother’s Guide to Parenting

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